Fire Is Murder (Ex-Agnostic Front, Rainmen) Vocalist Christopher Nolen Talks Debut EP

Photo: Tim Daley

Fire Is Murder is a band featuring veterans of the NYHC scene making its No Echo debut today. "The group formed in late 2019 during the Pandemic. Steve Gallo and I started writing a small four song demo," says vocalist Christopher Nolen. "Steve has a small studio set up in his apartment in Queens so I was going to meet up with him at least once a week. The studio consisted of an electric drum set, Logic, and we made a makeshift vocal booth in his basement with shipping blankets and broom sticks. We were both out of work, and what better was there to do but brainstorm this project.

"We both had played in bands previous. As you might already know, Steve, like his brother Mike, was playing with Agnostic Front, On the Rise, and Inhuman. I had just left a band from upstate New York named, Shoot the Messenger. I had played with a band in the mid-'90s named Rainmen, which was on the East Coast Assault 2 release.

"Anyhow, we drilled down four songs and demoed them out. The single, 'Reclaimed,' was released on Bandcamp in December 2020. The four-song demo was released on in July 2021. In July 2022, we inducted Mike Reo on drums, Danny Maher on bass, and Kute Tonge on rhythm guitar. We played shows like crazy—3 to 4 shows a month—which for a brand new band is pretty fair. We started recording the new EP in October 2022."

That EP is a self-titled 5-tracker that came out in late February:

Christopher spoke a bit about Fire Is Murder's stylistic approach. "This band has a plethora of influences. If you truly listen to any music you should devise the same outcome. We do see our sound as unique. Aesthetically, we are thrash hardcore-sounding band, peppered with melodic chords and metal guitar solos. It can also be explained that we play super-fast verses with hardcore hooks and choruses."

Photo: Miguel Angel Vazquez Jr.

The conversation—like always around these parts—turned to the local scene Christopher and Fire Is Murder is proudly part of. "There is a new breed of local punk rock and hardcore brewing in NYC. Bands such as Rebelmatic, The Car Bomb Parade, Non-Residents, Crazy Eddie, Enzinguri, Point Blank, Incendiary Device, MAAFA, Winterwolf, Silence Equals Death, Submerge, Beast from the East, Xtinguish the Code, Toyz, Charged for Battle, But Pyrite, Live Fast Die Fast, Ill Raised, Gordita Beach, Concrete Ties, and many more are doing their thing. It is truly a rebirth.

"Honestly, most of the older bands have moved on. Every now and then an oldie but goodie pops up, but otherwise I think NYC was in need of a new wind of hardcore and punk bands. It’s happening. Get with it and get in there. These are important times, and thankfully we have the old GOATs to assure and oversee that this scene doesn’t die."

The Fire Is Murder EP is available across all streaming outlets. Hit their Linktree to find their social media pages.


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